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US Telecom: FCC reclassification would be overturned

A potential move by the Federal Communications Commission to reclassify broadband Internet services as a Title II phone service wouldn’t hold up in court, an attorney hired by trade group US Telecom wrote in a letter to the agency.

That could lead the FCC into a lengthy legal battle that when challenged in court would be “impossible to square with the deregulatory purposes of the Telecommunications Act of 1996,” wrote former Supreme Court litigator Seth Waxman. His comments echoed those recently made by FCC member Robert McDowell, a minority Republican commissioner.

Waxman, in a 10-page legal opinion to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, said broadband services provided by companies such as AT&T, Verizon and Comcast were intended by prior communications commissions to be governed with a “light regulatory touch.”

“By classifying broadband Internet access as a ‘telecommunications service’ under Title II, the commission would essentially be making new law for a major sector of the economy,” said Waxman, who serves as US Telecom's counsel from Wilmer Hale.

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By Cecilia Kang  |  April 28, 2010; 2:45 PM ET
Categories:  AT&T , Broadband  | Tags: Broadband Internet access  
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Comments

At last - an article by Cecilia Kang which does not push the regulatory agenda of Google (she does write one occasionally). But where's the background? The analysis? The counterpoint? And, most importantly, where is the link to the comments being described? (OK, I'll provide it: they're at http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs/document/view.action?id=7020434374)

Posted by: LBrettGlass | April 28, 2010 6:26 PM | Report abuse

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